The Investment Scientist

Archive for August 2018


irrevocable-trust.pngMany successful families use irrevocable trusts for tax mitigation, wealth transfer and asset protection. In the last few articles, I discussed how an investor with a concentrated highly appreciated position can use a irrevocable charitable remainder trust to diversify concentrated risk, save taxes and benefit a charitable cause.

The caveat with irrevocable trusts is that granting families have to give up a measure of control. The trouble is that many families give up too much control than they need to. The result: they potentially put their goals at risk.

A physician client of mine created a irrevocable life insurance trust (ILIT) years ago to benefit his children. He named his sister, who loved his kids, as sole trustee. Unfortunately over the years, they became estranged and now she does not even return his calls. His trust is effectively in limbo.

What could he have done to avoid this situation?

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Michael Zhuang is principal of MZ Capital, a fee-only independent advisory firm based in Washington, DC.


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